Review – Jaguar’s Kiss by Vivi Andrews

Jaguar's KissPublisher: Samhain
Publish Date: June 10th
How I got this book: eARC from publisher

Lila Fallon, the Lone Pine Pride Alpha’s only daughter, has been betrothed since childhood to marry her father’s chosen successor. The match is designed to maintain peace by shoring up any cracks in pride solidarity.

She’s always known she would do her duty—she just never expected to meet a man who would tempt her to throw it all away.

As a black panther, Santiago Flores couldn’t be a less suitable mate for the Alpha’s purebred lioness daughter. But that doesn’t change the fact that for every one of the five years he’s been with the Lone Pine Pride, he’s been head-over-heels in love with her. And when the Alpha announces that Lila’s indefinite engagement is about to end in a very definite marriage, Santiago is through holding his peace.

From their very first kiss, Santiago rattles Lila’s neatly ordered world. But can a lioness who’s always lived to please everyone else risk everything to please herself?

Warning: This book contains tempting lone-wolf jaguars, lionesses who long for fairy tale endings, arranged marriages, tangled emotions and a pride full of trouble.
*Blurb from Goodreads*

I’m a sucker for a good shifter book, and while I’ve enjoyed Andrews books in the past, I had a hard time connecting with this one.

Lila is the pride princess, and has always done what was expected of her. She lived her life knowing that when the pride needed her, she would put her own wants and needs aside to fulfill her duty, regardless of the cost to her. But marrying a man who doesn’t interest her, when another does, is something that Lila isn’t sure she can do. Especially when Santiago’s kisses make her weak in the knees.

Santiago has wanted Lila since the moment he laid eyes on her. Finding out she is set to marry someone she doesn’t even like is more than he can stand. Kissing her is everything he imagined, but getting Lila to commit to more than his kisses is harder than Santiago thought. Getting her to see past the pride and to look at what she truly wants is near impossible, but the only chance he has at making her his forever.

While I really enjoyed the set up to this new series, I felt like I was missing something. It could be because these books are (I think) loosely connected with Andrews other series, and I’m not up-to-date on those book. Or, it could be that I just wasn’t given enough backstory or overall plot development to feel like I really got a handle on the world and their major problem. I liked the few major problems that were mentioned in the book, but nothing ever happened with those issues. I wanted more action, more development, instead of having all that take place off the page.

The romance was fun, but again it felt a bit rushed for me. I didn’t mind the fact that Lila and Santiago were quick to declare their love for each other, especially since they had known each other for years, but it did feel a little fast. Although they had known each other for years, they still had a lot of getting to know each other, and other than a few hot scenes and a few deep conversations, that never really happened either. With a paranormal story where mates aren’t destined, I still need their relationship to develop on a deep level that I never really felt with these two.

This novella was a quick read, but I think Andrews tried to pack too much into the storyline. Between the major plot arc that wasn’t really addressed, to the pride politics, to the secondary characters, I felt like this story really needed to have a bit more meat in order to really hook me. When I finished the book, I felt as if there was quite a bit that was left dangling, the unanswered questions numbering more than the answered ones.

All in all, I still enjoy Andrews writing, but an not sure this series will be for me. While I did enjoy the set up and characters, the smaller page count really limited the story for me, and I struggled to stay interested in all the loose ends.
I give Jaguar’s Kiss a C


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